Short Story
          Four Ghosts (After One Girl)
                                          By BlackWinterRoseThorn

  Sakura walked past the light pole on the way home from school.  Her
friends had already separated to go to their homes.  She passed by the
creepy old primary school and stopped for a few moments.  It had been
empty for generations, since before her parents were born.  It was supposed
to be demolished, but every time the construction company attempted to
bring something down something bad always happened.  Sakura had even
seen something fall from the machinery.  The girls in her class had spread
rumors about the place, but Sakura never had any belief in any of the horror
stories, Hanako-san or otherwise.

  She turned, walking towards the old cemetery that she lived nearby.  
Jumping, Sakura heard the caw of a Raven somewhere above her head.

  "Are you birds supposed to sleep when it's dark?" she asked quietly.  
Sakura continued walking, heading towards the pathway that would take her
home when a woman stepped out of the dark and into the light. Sakura
jumped, clutching her hand to her heart.

  "Konbonwa," the woman said.  Sakura could see that she was wearing a
surgical mask and reached into her pocket to clutch her bottle of holy water
that her friends had forced her to take.  It was a small relief to feel it there.

  "Good evening."

  "Am I beautiful?" the woman asked, stepping further so that Sakura could
see her grey trench coat and her black, old fashioned shoes.  Her hair was a
non-committal style that you might see on a business train.

  "Well, I'm not going to give you the flu, so you can take off that mask,"
Sakura said, taking a step back.

  "Am I beautiful now?" the woman asked, ripping off the mask.  Her face was
forced into a permanent smile Joker style.  Sakura screamed, pulling her holy
water out and attempted to fling it at her, but nothing came out.  She cursed
and ran back the other way, dropping the water bottle.  Her footsteps
sounded loud to her as she ran back towards the old school building.  Sakura
rattled the iron gates of the elementary school before she placed her foot on
the chains.  She boosted herself over before running inside.

  The stairs were directly in front of her, but she tried to run to her right, but
the sounds of someone running on their elbows stopped her.

  Teke teke teke teke.

  "Oh Kami, oh kami!"

  "God's not going to help you," Teke-teke said, crawling into the moon and
lamplight.  Sakura immediately began to turn back and run up the stairs.  She
continued to run up the stairs to the second floor, but the entire floor was
covered in debris.  Sakura continued to the third floor where she turned left,
running life depended on it.  Finding a girl's bathroom, she ran inside and
tried to open the third door.  Sakura pulled and pulled, knocking three times.

  "Is there anyone in there?" she screamed as the teke teke sound got closer.

  "Hai, Hanako is in here," an eerie, female voice said before the door
opened on its own.  A little girl with an old fashioned bob haircut stood beside
the old fashion toilet.  It was one of those ones you had to squat over in order
to do your business.  Sakura screamed, running to the last stall and entering
it easily.  She closed the door, locking it before sitting in the corner on the

  "Would you like akai-kami or aoi-kami?" a disembodied voice said, causing
Sakura to freeze.  There were a few moments of complete silence before it
asked again.

  "I don't know what you want me to do!"

  "Choose red paper or blue paper!" it growled.  The teke teke teke teke
stopped outside the stall and Hanako-san's voice came from outside the
stall.  Singing started to reach Sakura's ears, causing her to just put her face
in her hands and sob.

  "Are you there?  Are you there?  Do you think I'm beautiful?  If you don't I'll
cut you in half.  If you do I'll still cut you," the woman with the forever smiling
face sang, her footsteps keeping her in time.  "You'll have my forever smile.  
You and me.  You and me will be together."

  Sakura whimpered, trying to ignore the tune of Sakura Sakura.  She didn't
want to ruin the song her mother used to sing her to sleep with at night.  The
disembodied ghost started to speak again, when Teke-teke snapped at
Kuchisake Onna.

  "She's mine to cut in half, witch!"

  "I saw her first.  She needs to answer my question.  Girl, am I beautiful?"
Kuchisake Onna said, but Sakura could hear her clearly through the door as
if she were there with her.

  "H-hai," Sakura whimpered, weeping. "Yes, you're kirei."

  "Lie.  No.  She's mine," Hanako-san said, settling on the door of the stall.  It
swung open, breaking the lock.  Sakura whimpered, trying to sink into the wall.

  "No! She's mine!"  Akai Kami-Aoi Kami screamed.  A man materialized in
front of Sakura.  "She's mine."

  "Let me go!  Please," Sakura sobbed, shaking over and over.  "Kudasai!"

  The monsters started yelling about who would do something to Sakura, but
she couldn't understand what they were saying.  She only caught every other
syllable that they said until Hanako-san spoke up.

  "Why don't we just do everything?  Akai Kami-Aoi Kami, get your answer
now," she said, sitting beside Sakura on the floor.  "What's your answer?"

  "I don't want to."

  "Red or blue?"

  "I don't want to answer."

  "Answer, now."
  "Akai," she whimpered, pulling back.

  "Now what, Hanako-san?" Akai Kami-Aoi Kami asked, starting to go
invisible.  Hanako-san stopped him with a look.

  "Kuchisake Onna gets to cut her face first," Hanako-san responded.

  "And what do you get from this, Hanako-san?" Teke-teke asked.

  "You two out of my toile."

  "Fine," Teke-teke growled, pushing herself back so that the Kuchisake
Onna could get to her.  Hanako-san held Sakura down as Kuchisake Onna
lined up her scissors on one side of Sakura's mouth.  As she cut, a large
amount of blood came from the cut, bleeding down her chin to her blouse.  
The pain tasted like iron, iron that was in her blood as she lost it.  Kuchisake
Onna repeated the process on her other side.  Hanako-san release Sakura
as she reached for the wounds on her cheeks that led to her ears.

  "Teke-teke, you're turn," Hanako said.  The woman with only an upper torso
didn't do much more than pull out her detractable scythe that she immediately
used to cut Sakura in half at the torso.  The blade ate into her skin and
severed all nerves, muscle, and bones from each other.  She could feel her
vertebrae separating.  The agony caused tears that should have come from
the first two wounds, but didn't because she was in shock.  The salt in
Sakura's tears caused the still-fresh wounds to throb with a new passion.

  "Akai Kami-Aoi Kami, finish her off."
  "So much blood.  You'll be one bloody Teke-teke," he said, reaching for
Sakura's upper torso.  Sakura could see the glee in his eyes as he ripped
each piece of skin off of her.  The first few were so painful that she thought
she was in Hell, but soon she didn't really feel anything.  When he was done,
Teke-teke crawled out of the bathroom with her teke teke teke teke sound
trailing behind her.  Hanako returned to her stall with the loud crash of the
stall door.  The last thing Sakura heard before her death was Kuchisake
Onna's song as she walked away.

  "Are you there? Are you there?
  Do you think I'm beautiful?
  If you don't I'll cut you in half.
  If you do I'll still cut you.
  You'll have my forever smile.
  You and me, You and me
  Will be together.

  Can you hear? Can you hear?
  Can you hear their sounds of grief?
  We'll be remembered forever.
  Be ready for destruction.
  You'll have my forever smile.
  You and me, you and me
  Will be together."
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